I read an interview of a woman once who noted that she had a house cocktail. Fresh lime juice gimlet straight up or on the rocks. All ingredients on-hand to serve guests at any moment. Immediately I thought, "BRILLIANT!" Second thought was, "What is my house cocktail?" I wanted to choose a mixer that doubled as a drink for kids and teetotalers. For the last couple of years I've experienced a ginger beer moment. For the last decade, I've had a tequila moment. SO while my friends are loving Moscow Mules, I have adopted what I affectionately call a Mexican Mule* (all double entendre drug smuggling references intended). Tequila substituted for vodka mixed with ginger beer. The more spice to the ginger beer, the better! Rachel's Ginger Beer is perfect for this drink. The is a poorman's margarita. I swear people come over just for this drink.
Next dilemma: glasses! A quick tear sheet from my Tiffany & Co. table-setting book (Yep, I was a bride once upon a time.) depicts all the glassware you don't have space for. Fussy glassware doesn't get to fun- fast- and makes clean-up awful (again taking away from fun). For cocktails, really all you need are a set of double old-fashioned glasses, which in the summer I substitute with glassybaby drinkers in cola. Highballs are not as sexy to hold. Think about it. Holding a glass from the bottom is not something you do at breakfast or lunch. When you drink, everything you do should feel like a departure from everyday and with intended style/purpose. I take my drinking seriously! For white wine and bubbles I serve in short glasses and totally ignore the traditional shape. I have dozens of these glasses that are dishwasher safe, can be broken without much grief and can be substituted when a glass is misplaced/confused. For red-wine, stemless. Beer is served in the bottle so I know which label to refresh for each guest. Shortcuts. Always! Snifters and cordial glasses are for when I clear the kids dishes and Cheerios out of the cabinets and have enough energy for an after-dinner drink. xXx
*registered trademark pending